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Italian elections

The Critical Left, the lists with the hammer and sickle

Saturday 5 April 2008

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In Italy “another Left beyond the Rainbow is needed”. It is with this slogan that the Critical Left, the first formation to present a symbol with the hammer and sickle, is contesting the coming elections.

And after the old symbol of the labour movement, it innovates by presenting “a tandem and not a chief candidate” for the presidency of the Council, a young feminist activist, Flavia d’Angeli, together with the “heretic” senator, Franco Turigliatto.

“Another left is needed”, explains the outgoing deputy, Salvatore Cannavó “because that which is gathered under the symbol of the rainbow failed: the bankruptcy of the Prodi government is especially a bankruptcy of their first candidate, Fausto Bertinotti”. A left, continues Flavia d’Angeli, which is “inert and useless, which in recent months only said to the workers, to the young people, to the precarious: “I cannot do it”… ”.

The Critical Left, which includes among its candidates the former chief leader of the PRC group in the Senate, Gigi Malabarba, the journalist Umberto Gai and the historian Antonio Moscato, will give a voice to the students and teachers who disputed the presence of the pope with Sapienza, the women who defend law 194 on the termination of pregnancy (“in Ferrare we say” says Angeli “that men cannot control maternity. Why? Because they cannot experience it! ”) and the workers who struggle to reach the end of the month on their wages.

A left with the hammer and sickle, therefore “Communist”, but also “ecologist and feminist”,

which calls for an “emergency social program” with proposals for a minimal wage of 1,300 Euros, a tax on inheritance, social benefits of 1,000 Euros for the unemployed and the precarious and the reconversion of the army “to civil employment”.

The first obstacle on the road of the Critical Left is the electoral rules, which specify the obligation to collect the signatures in order to present lists for formations which do not have two members of Parliament in the same Chamber. “It is absurd”, said Cannavó, “we are two elected officials, one in the Chamber and one in the Senate, and are excluded by the rule. We called upon the President of the Republic and presented an amendment to remove this disparity. In words, all the other parties said they agreed, we will see at the time of the vote… But in any event they are informed, we will present ourselves at the elections”.